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Student Perspectives
The Student Perspectives blog is a fresh and realistic snapshot of the life of veterinary medical and biomedical science students.
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Interviewing Advice

Interviewing Advice Good luck to all the undergraduates who are taking finals this week. I know everybody is excited and ready to begin winter break, but we only have two days left and probably are going to get no sleep, so push through it! Today I wanted to talk about the interview process for those in BIMS looking to go to medical school. I recently went on a medical school interview and it was a great experience to see the campus and get to see that all the hard work is worth the time and effort. I interviewed in El Paso, Texas at the Paul L. Foster School of Medicine and the school was amazing. You can be apprehensive about the location, but the city is larger than I expected and, as I found out, it is the safest metropolitan city in the state. For those who do not know about the medical school, it is the newest one in Texas and just graduated its first class this past May. The school had 100% of its students matched for residency, which is amazing. My firs... (Read More)

Mental sanity

Mental sanity I'm writing this blog while relaxing with about 40 other vet students after a brutal week of finals. Finals is the time of year when everything you looked at and said "I don't need to learn that" comes back at you full force. As a vet student, there are more than just animals that can bite you. The term cumulative sends chills up your spine. Finals are one of the most challenging aspects of veterinary school. Life was bliss in undergrad when you just needed to make a grade in the course and get through it. With veterinary school it is important to remember what you've learned in previous years; it all builds. The first semester of third year was exhilarating and exhausting. Third year students performed survival surgeries and entered the clinics for the first time. Our schedules were full of countless hours of lectures and labs. It is astounding to look back and reflect on how much we've learned in 2.5 years. We started first year with an under... (Read More)

Approaching Finals

Approaching Finals As the semester approaches its end, the only thing on my mind is finals! This semester has certainly had its highs and lows, but I am proud to say I have at least managed to maintain my grades. One of the most important things I’ve learned while at A&M is that everyone has the opportunity to succeed during their sojourn here. "Good grades" may not always come easily but they WILL come if a continuous effort is made. Each semester that passes just means one semester closer to graduation, anyhow. To be honest, that is what keeps me going. So amidst the stress of tests, and with the pressure of doing my best constantly on my mind, I am happy to say that the semester’s end is near and we students will finally be able to enjoy the break we so readily deserve! (Read More)

The End Is Near

The End Is Near The end of the semester is only a few weeks away.  The vet school starts finals in less than a week, and undergraduates’ exams are a few days later.  This means less sleep, and that more caffeine will be consumed, just to gain a few more hours of valuable study time.  However, if students use their time wisely leading up to exams, there will be no lack of sleep, and they will be rested for the finals. Unlike high school students, college and professional school students have one or possibly two tests a day during finals week.  If there are more than three tests scheduled, students can ask the professor to take the test at a different time to help space everything out.  There is also “dead” week or day, which is a week of no class, to allow more time to study.  It might be easier in undergraduate classes to study the night before the test, but it is necessary in vet school to study more than just the night before.&n... (Read More)

Another Semester Gone By

Another Semester Gone By It is hard to believe that another semester has flown by, and I am preparing to take my final exams. It is even harder to believe that in January, I will begin my last semester of classes before starting clinical rotations in May.  I remember so clearly spending time in the anatomy lab first semester of my first year, wishing I was closer to the end so I could actually work on live animals. This semester has been a great transition from classroom time to more hands-on activities. For the first two years of vet school, we learn an incredible amount of material, but it is really in the third and fourth years that we can begin to apply it.  This year, Large Animal Medicine and Small Animal Medicine have been two of the primary courses.  In these classes, we learn how to apply our knowledge in a clinical setting to diagnose and treat patients.  While some of what we learn has already been taught, the material is presented in a p... (Read More)

What is the DICTC?

What is the DICTC? Howdy Ags! I hope everyone’s semester is going well! I can’t believe the semester is almost over. Only a few weeks left and then we are finished! Yay! On another note, I want to tell you about the Diagnostic Imaging and Cancer Treatment Center, or DICTC, which is located between the small and large animal hospitals here at the Texas A&M College of Veterinary Medicine & Biomedical Sciences. A few weeks ago, I was lucky enough to take a tour of this amazing facility. Unfortunately, as ambassadors we can’t take the public into the facility due to the use of radioactive material in administering radiation treatments for our cancer patients, so I wanted to give you some information about what goes on under the roof of the DICTC. The DICTC houses 3 major machines. The first is a Tomotherapy unit, an amazing machine used to treat cancer. The college is lucky enough to house the only Tomotherapy unit in the nation big enough for use on large... (Read More)

My, How Time Flies!

My, How Time Flies! Well, the semester is coming to a close and it flew by like you wouldn’t believe. The block scheduling of third year really makes the time go by; you only have some classes for 4 weeks, so you are not in most classes long enough to get tired of them; you are actively wanting to learn the entire time. The only thing that is a little tough is if you have exams in your core classes during the last week of the block because you may have finals in your electives. We had a pretty tough week a couple of weeks ago. I had four exams in one week while others had three (it just depended on your classes), but it was our last round of tests until finals, which blew most of our minds. After that horrible week of tests, I recently celebrated my birthday. We had a birthday in our class almost every day last week, so we decided to do a joint birthday celebration at the local bowling alley. We invited the entire class and quite a few people showed up; it was rea... (Read More)

Clinical Correlates—or, How to Restrain a Goat

Clinical Correlates—or, How to Restrain a Goat Over the course of this semester, my classmates and I have had the opportunity to get hands-on experience practicing basic clinical skills with a variety of species in our weekly clinical correlates class.  Every Friday we have a different rotation, so by the end of the semester we will have handled birds, tortoises, goats, and cattle.  It has been nice to have a fun activity (with animals!) awaiting me at the end of each week. My first rotation was a lecture on low-stress handling of cats, which was given by a technician who works in the Feline Internal Medicine ward our Small Animal Hospital.  Staff members in the hospital have committed to creating a calm environment for our feline patients and therefore practice handling techniques that are quiet and gentle.  The "old school" approach to handling cats for veterinary care was basically a one-size-fits-all approach that was overboard for the cats that weren't going to be di... (Read More)

Solving my Mini Life Crisis

Solving my Mini Life Crisis These past few weeks have been all kinds of hectic. Between tests, organizations, and life in general, the planning of what courses we want to take next semester has begun. Except you can’t just plan what courses you’ll take next semester (as I naively thought my freshman year when doing this for the first time): you have to plan, in addition, the next, next semester and sometimes even the next, next, next semester. It’s all about that four-year plan. So in doing my course planning, a topic came up that has thrown my whole life for a loop this past couple of weeks: study abroad. As many of you know, while getting your biomedical sciences undergraduate degree, you have the additional option of also getting your Spanish certification. One of the requirements for the certification is a study abroad experience (in a Spanish-speaking country, of course). Since freshman year, I had been planning on going to Costa Rica, and doing the same program so m... (Read More)

Being Sick…

Being Sick… As a veterinary student, I find the body and the way it works incredible. You don’t have to consciously tell your heart to beat or your intestines to digest; they just do their jobs, thanks to regulation by a special part of the nervous system. When the body is under different conditions, like being sick, the way it works can be just as interesting. Unless it is you who is sick… This past Monday I woke up and felt pretty bad. I thought I might just have a bad case of the “Mondays” and tried to power through. I sat at the back of the class to avoid close contact with my fellow classmates in case I was sick. After sitting through a morning of lectures and realizing I wasn’t getting better, I went home. I slept through the entire afternoon, woke up briefly to have some water, toast, and medicine, and went back to bed. Feeling worse the next morning, I took action and went in to the doctor. She was able to tell me that it wasn’t your average strep ... (Read More)